Kaitlyn is REALLY swimming again!

After seeing the video of how well Kaitlyn has been doing in the pool, Ron was eager to see the action in person. We decided to head to the pool bright and early this morning to get some practice in before Ron had to be to work. Kaitlyn seemed excited to show off her skills telling Daddy she was going to show him how she swims to the steps. When we got to the Rec Center, she didn't want to swim. Figures! After some time in the kiddie pool, then time playing on the steps in the big pool, I told Ron to just grab her (you have to be sneaky or she runs out of the pool when she sees you coming for her) and tell her we're going to swim. She didn't put up too much of a fight, but as you'll see in the video if you don't stay next to her, she bolts out of the pool as soon as her feet touch the steps. After the second time she bolted, Ron said he didn't want to push her too much. I insisted she needed the push--she was doing so well, making such great progress and for the first time all week, she wasn't crying. He brought her back in and the next time she got out, we had to practically carry her out because she didn't want to leave. She was actually asking to swim to the steps! It was amazing. This was all in a span of about 30 minutes and as you'll see (at about 1:35 in the video) she's also started using her arms/hands.

I took her back this afternoon and she continued right where she left off this morning. Without any hesitation she told me to "go away", meaning away from the steps so she could swim to me.  She must have gone back and forth between me and the steps 50 times. She was so quick to swim, get to me or the steps, then jump back in and do it again. I had to force her to take breaks. We practiced swimming to the wall and she even jumped in and swam to me. I'm so happy to have our little swimmer back! Hopefully, we can get enough practice before the weather cools off so we don't have start all over again next summer!


Kaitlyn is swimming again!

On Monday afternoon while Jonathan napped, Kaitlyn and I were playing downstairs.  Out of nowhere, she looked at me and said, "Maaaybe, we can go to the pool."  She hadn't been to the pool in a few weeks and since she asked for it so out-of-the-blue I thought it would be a nice change.  We got Jonathan up from his nap, packed a bag and headed out the door.  I told Kaitlyn we would just be going to the kiddie pool because Mommy wasn't going in the water and she was fine with that.  We were the only ones there and Kaitlyn immediately hopped in and started splashing around.  She shocked me with how well she was kicking and how easily she was putting her face underwater.  Here's a video from Day 1: (Side note: At the beginning, she's talking about 2 Kikis that she sees in my sunglasses and then she goes on to talk in some random language you probably don't understand. Nobody does.  Kaitlyn has recently started babbling in her own language.  It's pretty funny.)

I decided to take her back the next morning to take advantage of her newfound comfort with the water.  She blew me away this time!  She had improved overnight and was loving the water!  We met my friend Rachel and her son Stanley and the kids had so much fun.  As you'll see in this next video, there are times where she's actually swimming and not using her hands on the floor of the pool to move along.  She also started practicing her soon-to-be-famous belly flop.

I was eager to get her in the big pool to get her to swim to the stairs.  Once we were there she wouldn't let me come near her for fear that I would make her swim.  After we played on the stairs, I finally got a hold of her and told her we were going to practice swimming.  She didn't want to, but I explained it was just like she was doing in the kiddie pool.  The first time she did it, she got to the steps and cried, but didn't get out of the pool like she usually does.  I took her again and she swam to the steps one more time, again crying that she was "all done" when she sat on the steps.  I told her she was doing so well and we would do it three more times.  Just like last summer, once she did it a few times she stopped crying and started to enjoy it.  She was more comfortable with it and was even shyly grinning with pride.  On the last swim, she said "Look, Jonathan, I'm going to swim!"  He was sitting in his stroller poolside admiring his big sister.


Jonathan's Birthday recap

Warning: LOTS of pictures ahead.

On Jonathan's birthday, he started the day off in a good mood but woke up from his nap with a fever.  Ron took the afternoon off from work and we planned for a fun day out.  Instead, we spent the rest of the afternoon inside and Jonathan was understandably cranky.
We ordered pizza and served Jonathan his first full slice.  He wasn't quite sure what to do with it.
Ron lent a hand...
 and he quickly caught on.
Geeta was there to help us celebrate.
Kaitlyn was on hand to help her little brother.
The cake seemed to help put him in a good mood.
The cake I made wasn't so great, luckily a friend picked up some yummy treats from a local cupcake shop in Tel Aviv.
Luckily, by the time the weekend rolled around, Jonathan was feeling much better with no signs of a fever and ready to party!  We had a couple families over with a total of 9 kids ranging in age from 8 months to 3 years old.
Before guests arrived, we got the siblings together for a picture.
Both Kaitlyn and Daddy sported the same shirts they wore the day Jonthan was born. :)
Kaitlyn was such a good big sister helping her brother get around in the bounce house.
Singing happy birthday. Per usual, Kaitlyn gets shy even though they aren't singing to her.
Then Jonathan tore into the cupcake!
"How am I doing, Daddy?"
Kaitlyn and some of her buddies cooling off after time in the bounce house.
We really had a nice day and the kids had a blast.  We still can't believe our boy is one!


Jonathan is 1 Year Old!

At one year old, Jonathan:
  • wears size 3 diapers and size 12 mo - 18 mo clothes.
  • "talks" so much.  He just babbles on and on about what he sees around him.
  • loves to dance.  When he hears music, he starts to move.
  • points at everything.
  • loves Daddy!  In the last few weeks Daddy has really become his favorite person and he says "dada" all day long.  On the weekdays, Kaitlyn tells him, "Daddy's at work, buddy."
  • walks like a pro!  He's picking up speed and only occassionaly has a stumble when he can't keep up with his own momentum.
  • mimics us.  He laughs out loud when we do and when Kaitlyn gargles, he does the same.  Silly kids.
  • is eating all sorts of "big" food.  He transitioned from formula to milk like a champ and has had no reactions to all of the new foods he's eating.
  • does the cutest thing: when we're sitting on the floor playing, he'll walk over to us, turn around and back up to sit on our lap.  I love it.
  • will be going fo rhis 12 month check up next week.  I'll post updates on height/weight, etc.
  • continues to be an amazing sleeper.
  • is in a new convertible "big-boy" car seat, but he will remain rear-facing (see why here).

Happy birthday, Jonathan!


The Kids

You'll often hear me complain about the trials and tribulations of parenthood.  Kaitlyn is definitely going through the terrible years.  Let's face it, it's not just the twos.  Someone recently said to me, "Whoever wrote the book on terrible twos, wrote it before their kid turned 3."  I've even jokingly described her behavior as resembling bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.  (Not to make light of those very serious illnesses, but it's the best way I can describe it.)  One minute she's crying for a certain food/toy/tv show and I give it to her.  She then throws a fit that she doesn't want said food/toy/tv show.  It's really awesome.

With Jonathan getting older, they are playing together more.  Often times it's Jonathan chasing after Kaitlyn, trying to see what his big sister is doing and wanting to be part of it.  Kaitlyn's response is usually, "No, Jonathan.  Go away!  It's my toy!"  We've been trying to teach her to calmly tell Mommy or Daddy, "I don't like what Jonathan is doing, please move him."  Sometimes she does, but mostly she screams at him.  The other day as she and I played downstairs, we heard Jonathan on the baby monitor "talking" in his room after waking up from a nap.  Without skipping a beat, Kaitlyn said, "No, Jonathan, I'm playing with this toy!"  He wasn't even in the room...or on the same floor of the house.  Sigh.
Thursday afternoon was so different.  The three of us laughed, danced and played together and it was awesome.  Kaitlyn had such a great time with Jonathan and he was so excited to play with her.  Here are some funny videos I got:

One of my favorite moments that I unfortunately didn't get on video was when the three of us did a quick round of "Ring Around the Rosie" then Kaitlyn walked away to go play with a toy.  Jonathan walked over to her and tried to grab her hands so they could dance again.  It was the sweetest!

When Ron works his later shift, he usually gets home as the kids are getting ready for bed.  The kids can hear him when he walks in the door downstairs and they get super excited that Daddy's home.  Here's a video of the excitement.  Who wouldn't love to walk in the door to a greeting like this?


I Never Want to Forget: More Kaitlyn-isms

**I have been working on this post for at least a month now---trying to think of a few more things she's been saying, waiting to get a good photo to add, but time keeps passing.  So, here it is...**

Kaitlyn has been saying some funny things lately.  Some of my favorites:

hummus bird = humming bird

After our trip to Jerusalem we asked her which church we went to.  She said, "Church of the Holy Spirit" = Church of the Holy Sepulchre

My purpose in taking the above picture was to capture the tiny little freckles that have recently shown up on the bridge of her nose.  I love them.

Her version of "Baa Baa Black Sheep":
Aba black sheep, have you any wolves.
Yes sir, yes sir, 3 years old.

She still calls McDonald's (as in, the golden arches) "Old McDonald's".

And my absolute favorite:  Sometimes at night she asks us to rock her.  I usually sing "You Are My Sunshine" and lately, she's been singing along with me.  It's the most precious thing.  Ever.  I had to sneak to turn the camera on one night so I could record it.  You can't see anything because it was dark.  Listen closely, at the end she tells me she's ready to go lay in bed.  So sweet.

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